Zwarte Lente ('Black Spring') was created in 2020, and was Hjort's debut as a playwright. After creating two largely non-verbal works (My Heart Into My Mouth and Happy Together), this was a step towards integrating text, movement and music in a total composition.
Zwarte Lente is the beginning of a series of works that engage with ecology and the emotional and spiritual consequences of the current destruction of nature. It departs from the suggestion that we human beings are in a relational crisis with nature - or perhaps more like a break-up. Inspired by ecofeminism and sexual ecology, the work suggests that our relationship to nature is not that of a child towards a parent, but more of a relationship between lovers. In which there are actual consequences, and breaking up is an actual possibility.
The staging took place in a set created as a reflection on the empty space, using rusted metal plates as the ground on which we live. For the first time in their collaboration, composer Marko Ivic took part as a performer, creating live music.
The work was inspired by a moment of ecological insight: looking at his beloved Hallingskarvet mountains one night, Hjort started wondering how he would feel if these mountains would just disappear? Which price would he pay to save them? This fantasy about a disappearing nature was the initial spark for Zwarte Lente. The environment is part of who we are. What happens if we cause so much damage that it disappears, like a lover disappearing in the night?